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Banks including JPMorgan and Truist are gravitating towards a “true hybrid advice model” over typical robo-advising. 

Banks are realizing that by pairing automated rebalancing and algorithmic advice with phone advisor consults, they can win over younger, digital-savvy investors without a high price tag.

The likes of JPMorgan, Ally Financial, Truist, and Bank of America have all expanded from offering standard automated robo-advising to providing supplemental personal consultations with financial advisors. Clients can speak to an advisor via either phone or video, allowing banks to serve lower-net-worth clients than their advisory services typically reach. 

The shift gives banks a way to offer clients a more personal touch, at a lower price, which helps strengthen relationships and build trust.  

“This is a milestone for us and a way for us to serve a whole new set of clients,” JPMorgan’s CEO of US wealth management, Kristin Lemkau, said in the recent announcement of the bank’s personal advisors service.  

Each bank offers its own combination of investment minimums and fees to access its human advisory services, though all still clock in at lower prices than traditional financial advisors.  

“Robo advice is yesterday’s term,” said Javelin Strategy director William Trout told American Banker. “You need a human element.” 

Giving people access to digital tools that broaden access to investment strategies once reserved for the ultra-wealthy is a focus for both fintechs and legacy institutions. (Though that shifting emphasis between high-touch, prestige relationships and purely algorithmic ones recently sparked tension at UBS.)